What comes to mind when you think about self care practices? A mani/pedi? Massage? A Netflix binge with your bestie?
How about discipline?
Not so much? Stay with me.
I see discipline as the foundation of our self-care. When we’re disciplined, we make good decisions for ourselves. We treat ourselves well.
Discipline is doing things FOR yourself. It’s not something you do to make yourself miserable.
The lack of discipline breeds misery
Like not planning your food for the next day when you know you’ve got 12 hours of work. So instead you grab Starbucks on the way into the office, skip lunch, and drive-thru Dairy Queen on the way home.
Then you compound that with kicking yourself the next morning, promising you’ll “be good today.”
Disciplines keep us healthy and make our lives better. Like with kids. We don’t let them play in the street or watch Carmen Sandiego until 2am because we love them and want what’s best for them. Not because we want to spoil their fun.
Self-care is not always visible to others
Self care isn’t about the big things like vacation and spa days. These are important, but we can’t exhaust ourselves and expect a few days or a week to make up for neglecting our needs day-in and day-out.
It’s more about the daily, sometimes unseen, self care practices that contribute to the quality of your life.
- Small reminders that you’re doing the best you can.
- Choosing foods that you enjoy and that nourish your body.
- Taking a moment for fresh air between back-to-back meetings.
- Not thinking you have to pick up every phone call or answer every text right away.
- Opting for stretches and breathwork over a glass of wine on a Tuesday night.
You can have all the massages and things. Weave them into your schedule. But to create a life you love, looking and feeling your best, it’s the discipline of following through on daily decisions to take genuinely good care of yourself that make the difference.